COVID-19 Update plus new government hardship provisions for energy, water and rate bills

Hawks Nest – Bennetts Beach closed. Note all public facilities such as parks, beaches and other open spaces are subject to the Public Health (COVID-19 Restrictions on Gathering and Movement) Order, being enforced by NSW Police.


NSW Health advise that there were 2,854 cases in NSW and 24 deaths as at 11 April.

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Nationally there are 6,313 cases and 59 deaths as at 3pm on 12 April.

By comparison, last week NOTA reported there were 5,687 cases and 35 deaths.

Of the confirmed NSW cases, 270 in the Hunter New England Health District (as at 11 April), up 25 cases from the 245 cases reported last week.

Good news is that the daily rate of increase has fallen over the past fortnight, indicating that social isolation measures are working and require sustainment.

More good news from the Australian Government which is now supporting small businesses and households experiencing additional financial stress due to utility bills .

These bills keep coming despite lost income due to the adverse impact of COVID-19 on income.

Measures being implemented include offering flexible payments; stopping disconnections for those demonstrating financial stress; deferring debt recovery proceedings and credit default listing; waiving late fees and interest charges on associated debts; and providing additional time and/or payment plans.

Many utility and insurance providers are also capping any price increases.

For assistance do not wait, contact your utility or insurance provider (online where possible).

COVID-19 updates are provided by the Australian Department of Health on 1800 020 080.

If you are concerned about symptoms, call your local doctor or call the Health Direct Line on 1800 022 222.

For local council updates about COVID-19 and social distancing orders go to


By Sandra MURRAY


Social Distancing directions clearly in place along the Myall River, Tea Gardens.

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